April 27, 2012
The Amateur Softball Association of the Philippines (ASAPHIL) opens its expanded 2012 National Softball Open Championships in Clarkfield, Pampanga on Sunday, April 29 with a total of 31 teams including three foreign teams from Indonesia and Brunei.
“This will be a big boost for Philippine softball as for the first time, we will have two divisions each in both the men’s and women’s competitions – the Open division, which will feature teams mostly with national players and the Club division, which will provide an opportunity for other teams to compete at their own level,” said sportsman-businessman and ASAPHIL president Jean Henri Lhuillier.
For the first time in a long time, there will be three foreign teams, two in the women’s side and one in the men’s competition, which have registered for the event with all two of the three teams powered by Filipino players in both divisions.
Kensei Club, owned by the Princess of Brunei, is led by national player Apol Rosales together with Edzel Manuel and Roldan Bacarisas and supposedly a strong Canadian pitcher while in the women’s side, Blu Girls Esmeralda Tayag and Dione Macasu will lead the charge for the team from Indonesia.
Sponsors of this year’s competition are Cebuana Lhuillier, Cebuana Pera Padala, Cebuana Lhuillier Insurance Solutions, Cebuana Lhuillier Bank, Just Jewels, Le Soleil de Boracay, Phiten, TJ Hotdog, Pure-foods Chicken Nuggets, Smokey’s, Hungry Juan, Dept. of Tourism Region 3, and Clark Development Corp.
The men’s Open division has nine teams: Philippine Air Force, Philippine Navy, Philippine Army, Rizal Technological University, Zamboanga, JK.com Zamboanga, Salazar Institute of Technology-Cebu, Kensei, and West Java.
Defending women’s Open champion Adamson University will content with the Adamson University Alumni team, University of the East, RTU, and the two foreign teams, Papua Province and West Java-Indonesia.
Simple opening ceremonies will be held this Sunday with special guests Pampanga Governor Lilia Pineda, CDC Chairman Ge. Eduardo Oban Jr., DOT Regional Director Ronnie Tiotuico, and the ASAPHIL board, led by Jean Henri Lhuillier.